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NigelO

FreeWheel endorsement

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NigelO

At Stoneleigh 2018, I bought an 8-channel FreeWheel system from Mike at @Kit Car Electronics. I'd only had the car for a few weeks and having to use dash controls for everything irritated me. It was always going to be a winter project, so the box went straight onto the garage shelf.

Roll on a few months and the car was tucked away in the garage for winter. I started and completed the steering wheel button arrangement.  Roll on a couple more months and I thought I'd better get cracking. So - off comes the dash and the scuttle to reveal a horror story of wiring. It all worked, but when a previous owner had fitted Savage dash switches, the standard wiring loom had been quite severely chopped about and replaced with only three colours of wire. Even worse, when I pulled the dash forward, most of the connectors to the Savage switches came off - none were labelled....

Over the next couple of months, with some encouraging words from this forum, I gradually sussed out the tangle of wiring and got everything working again (and labelled for future reference).

So - the next task - working out where to splice in the 20(!) wires for the FreeWheel receiver.

We all know that the FreeWheel system is the go-to solution for Westfield owners (and presumably quite a few other kit car and race car groups too). However, it was only when I started to ask questions that the true value of the FreeWheel system became apparent - it's Mike! He put up with a string of lengthy emails from me, trying to understand how / where to make connections without frying the car's electrics or having the horn sound in unison with the hazards.

I've had last week off work to complete the car (I also bought a few carbon bits from Mark at Carbon NV) and yesterday, everything was completed. I just have to clean six month's worth of garage dust off the car and I can go out and enjoy to great Easter weather :yellow-westy:

So - a huge thanks to Mike at @Kit Car Electronics - without his help, I would probably have given up and paid an auto electrician to come and do it all for me (and in doing so, I wouldn't have learned anything about the car's electrics - I now feel pretty comfortable with the spaghetti behind the dash).

Cheers Mike - I owe you a beer:yes:

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Ian Kinder (Bagpuss) - Joint Peak District AO

Great to read it's all done.

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary

Great to hear it's all done now and your spaghetti is sorted!

The beauty of Westfields is that most of the wiring is pretty straightforward once you start to trace and identify stuff. Get your head around the way relays work, and the difference between the terms "normally open" and "normally closed" with respect to relays and switches, and you're another good chunk of the way there!

Mike really is superb when it comes to pre and post sales service, help and advice. He even did custom firmware for me, to create a proper "modern" car style dashboard controller built around a Freewheel and a Beamstop. Fantastic stuff.

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Kit Car Electronics

Thanks! Great to hear it's sorted- I love seeing them finished- should be a fair few wheels being shown off at Stoneleigh :sun:

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary

Also, don’t forget that Freewheel doesn’t just work with steering wheel mounted buttons. You can use one with just dash mounted buttons, (connected to the transmitter, as normal) and get all the benefits of the Freewheel logic/switching, like timed indicators, fog lamp control etc. It works so much nicer than the standard rocker switches, like this. If you want, you can even have two transmitters on the one Freewheeel, so one transmitter can do the dash buttons, and a second on the wheel could replicate the buttons you want close to hand, as well. Like indicators and main beam change over.

Its so flexible, that it really is down to your imagination what you can do with it.

Plus of course, there is the new version, that adds a variable rotary control switch, too!

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Kit Car Electronics

Well this sounds like an advert, so I might as well cheekily mention that I'll have a demo kit(s) with me at Stoneleigh if anyone would like to see- I'll likely be hanging around the marquee most of the weekend 

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary

Not just for carboned up race cars ;)

8B501D02-47AA-441B-B23B-4F22D927BB64.jpeg

19888886-559C-4C87-AE1D-02796FA12C2D.jpeg

Both wheel and dash switches are on the Freewheel!

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Captain Colonial

Have to say this club and it’s members, including and especially me, are indeed fortunate to have Mike as a member.  I’m so pleased to see how his business has blossomed.  If you told me there was a nicer, more clever, and harder working man than Mike in the club, I’d get you sectioned.  I thank him every time I’m in my car. :t-up:

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NigelO

damn - spoke too soon - can't get the car started :bangshead:

The fuel pump isn't priming and there's no voltage to the fuel pump fuse on the bulkhead - any ideas where I should look?

Yet again, the hacked wiring is causing me issues - the wiring to the immobiliser connector (two white/red, two green, two white) has been chopped about and replaced with....  eight black!! These all feed into the Autowatch immobiliser, so I can't really work out what's what. That said, I have no reason to believe this is the issue. I've had the engine started in the last couple of months, so I'm pretty sure I must have disturbed something simple - I think I'm going to pull all the earth cables apart and check the connections. This is the only thing I've changed (I had multiple earth eyelets on the battery, so I've replaced them with a thick earth cable inside the scuttle with a common earth connection).

Ah - the joys of kit car ownership - I was really looking forward to a blast in the sunshine....

EDIT - dodgy earth found - fuel pump now priming :d

While I was at it, I also managed to pull out a wire from a relay holder - it was only dry-crimped into the connector.... I've pulled the relay holder apart and soldered it properly.

Just got to put it all back together again now

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Kit Car Electronics

I think most of our cars have plenty of ways to immobilise themselves, without actually needing an immobiliser to do that job :d

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary
1 hour ago, NigelO said:

 was only dry-crimped into the connector.... I've pulled the relay holder apart and soldered it properly.

Dry crimped is the proper way of doing things, but must be properly dry crimped, with the right type of terminals. Soldered connections, I’m afraid, just risk storing problems up for the years to come. (Solder does have its place though).

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NigelO

WooHoooo!

 

It lives!

 

:yellow-westy:

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary
1 hour ago, NigelO said:

WooHoooo!

 

It lives!

 

:yellow-westy:

Brilliant news! Still nice and warm and sunny out there, too!

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Exitus
4 hours ago, Kit Car Electronics said:

I think most of our cars have plenty of ways to immobilise themselves, without actually needing an immobiliser to do that job :d

It didn't take me long to start turning the car on before I strapped myself in.

There's nothing like getting the harness done up, seat adjusted, helmet on etc, then turning the key, nothing happening and having to climb back out to find out what's gone wrong!

Getting back to the thread, a freewheel is definitely on my to-do list at some point! (once I've finished slathering the car in carbon fibre...)

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